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January 8, 2014 at 6:04 pm ET
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Not That Difficult

Let’s say you had a museum. A baseball museum. And in it, you’d have a special place reserved for only the game’s greatest players. A “hall of fame,” if you will. Who would you put in it? The guy with the most hits? The guy with the most homers? How about the guy with the most Cy Young awards?

Baseball’s happy to make sweeping changes without a blink.

Balance the leagues? Sure, let’s toss the Astros into the American League!

Think we might need a replay? Sure! Let’s make every call reviewable!

Enjoy postseason drama? Great! Let’s play a do-or-die game before the playoffs start!

So how come it’s so hard to change the way players get into the Hall of Fame?

The system is broken. No one can argue otherwise. We’re caught on this endless loop of finger-wagging and high-and-mighty morality lessons about who’s worthy and who’s not.

Since the day Bart Giamatti banned Pete Rose, the Hall of Fame system’s been broken. No matter what else the guy did, he got more hits than anyone in the history of the game. Barry Bonds hit more homers. Roger Clemens won more Cy Youngs. Do I want any of those guys at my backyard barbecue? No. They’re jerks. But in baseball, getting more hits, hitting more homers and winning more Cy Youngs than anyone else means you get into the Hall of Fame.

Today it was revealed that the writer who gave away his Hall of Fame vote is Dan LeBatard of ESPN and the Miami Herald. He did it for all sorts of reasons, some of which make sense. Murray Chass, who used to be rational, also made the wrong kind of news this year for his ballot.

So can we please change the way Hall of Famers are selected? It’s clear that this bunch – the BBWAA – is incapable. Changing it’s gotta be at least as easy as adding another level of playoffs.

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One Response to “Not That Difficult”
  1. Seth says:

    When I saw the title, I thought you were going to rail against the voter(s) that didn’t complete the ballot. Like, it’s “Not That Difficult” to complete a ballot. I got all excited. But this is equally as satisfying.

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